JOURNEY OF HOPE WITH RODNEY MATHERS (mathersrodney@yahoo.com)

Help for those serious about successful reintegration.

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Episodes

Tuesday May 31, 2022

 
 
Hello!
.John Mandala did twenty years flat. Once out, he wrote a couple of books. One of these books in particular, After Prison A Way To Succeed, caught my eye. While looking to explore the book,  I also learned quiet a bit about John. The book addresses ways to approach various things we need for the best chance at a successful life after incarceration. In addition, John fills us in on his experiences. Join us for our discussion!
Just a little side note - I've been doing this podcast since May of 2010. Twelve years.
If God is for you, who can be against you?

Monday Apr 04, 2022

Hi there!
I think reintegration is is two things. First of all, it is overcoming adversity. Secondly, it is having reasonable expectations. Both of things are big time difficult! Whenever I find someone that has achieved these two things, I want to pick their brain for ideas.  
This episode takes a look at such a person. Steve Borys is such a person and I speak with him about his book and his successful life.
If God is for us, who can be against us?
 

Thursday Jan 13, 2022

Greetings!
Quick extra episode - 
More and more, I'm finding it more satisfying and informative to share the tidbits I've learned about the reintegration of offenders. In addition, although I receive many requests to be interviewed on the podcast, I'm not finding the guests that are beneficial to our quest. I have several topics I'd like to throw out there for contemplation anyway so the timing  is actually good!
On this episode, I suggest the idea of "Restorative Justice". This, in my view, is the way some convictions could be handled so that the victim, offender, and society at large can move forward in a safe and productive way. 
Join me as I talk about what Restorative Justice is and how it works.
If God is for you, who can be against you?
 

Thursday Nov 11, 2021

Hi there!
I hope everyone is well! 
It has always disappointed me to see people get out of prison and go right back to their old, destructive behaviors. Frankly, I think for some of us it's really easy to fall back into that trap . I haven't personally had to deal with that however and I think, for me,  it comes from prison and parole being a punitive experience - for me.  I don't want to go back!
Last week, there was an incident in Houston that was a reminder to me of how easy it can be to allow yourself to create a detrimental thought life. We should never forget that behaviors begin with thoughts. Those thoughts can start so very easily!! 
This guy, Travis Scott, the rapper who put the fatal Astroworld music festival together is the topic of my discussion on this episode of the podcast. I basically posit that we, as people who have lost years of life and suffer the enduring consequences of being a convicted felon, should be careful about what we allow to enter our thought life. I further believe that rebellion and violence laden song lyrics, running as the backing track to our daily lives is very dangerous. Why would we allow a thug like Travis Scott any where near our lives in any capacity?
Remember, if God is for you, who can be against you?
 

Thursday Sep 30, 2021

Welcome!
My guest this week has dealt with and is dealing with a level of adversity that should give us all cause to reflect on what we are doing to deal with the adversity associated with reintegration. Terry Tucker has cancer and has been fighting it for over 9 years. His attitude and determination inspire me and when we started the interview I wanted to find out how he achieved his positiveness. Terry explains his methodology as we chat on this episode. As always, I am sure there is something in his story that you can use in your struggle. 
You can check out more about Terry Tucker here: motivationalcheck.com 
If God is for you, who can be against you? 
 

Tuesday Sep 07, 2021

Hello and welcome!
My guest this time is Pete Cossaboon. Pete did a little bit of federal time and because of his conviction had to reinvent himself.  He's done a a fantastic job of turning his adversity into a successful and satisfying way of life. Pete is a life coach and has several on-line courses which look great and I recommend you take a look at what he has to offer. However, our paths cross with Pete at the point where he turned his situation around. Join me as I talk with Pete about what it took to do that.  I think you'll find there are helpful ideas in his story.
If God is for you, who can be against you.

Wednesday Aug 25, 2021

Hello Everyone!
I seldom have repeat guests on the podcast. I've always figured that once someone shares their ideas with us it's time to move on and see what else we can learn. Despite the fact that this podcast is tiny I have never had a problem getting guests. In fact, I turn down many more than I consider and eventually book.
My guest this week, Bracha Goetz is an exception to the rule. A Harvard grad, Bracha can go deep on fighting addictions. Addictions are one of the leading causes of recidivism and if you're struggling, Bracha just may have some ideas that can ease your struggle.
If God is for you, who can be against you?

Saturday Aug 14, 2021

Welcome!
In this episode I take a look at a Harvard study on what is needed for a successful re-entry. At first it seems to be the same old stuff but there is a surprise addition to this particular study. It's something I've been saying for a long time! Check it out....
Also, I've got some information on a telephone scam that targets felons. You should be aware of this. The scammer almost got me!
If God is for you, who can be against you?

Friday Jul 16, 2021

Welcome!
Throughout the time I've been doing this podcast, I've stayed away from looking backwards. Things like prison conditions, abusive guards, sentencing, and other topics related to being in prison are not the purpose of the podcast. I want to put prison behind me and move on with life in a way that proves I am worthy of the second chance I've been given. 
However, that 7 years and 11 months I did, is a reality that can not be denied. I think about it all the time. I think maybe I've been a little too harsh about staying away from all that on the podcast. 
My guest on this episode is Shane Flemmons. Shane did a few a years and has written about his experiences in two books: Conviction and Deep Convictions. The books are evidence of the disfunctionality of prison and the lessons learned from the experiences and stories of other inmates. Join us as we chat with Shane about these things and more on this episode.
If God is for you, who can be against you?

Wednesday Jun 23, 2021

Hello!
Sometimes I think it's good to focus on ourselves. We' are not being overly self-centered when we think about, consider, and execute strategies to improve "anything" about ourselves.  By the word "anything" I mean aspects of our physical and mental health. As we all know, the hurdles to be jumped to achieve successful  reintegration are very, very, tall. In my opinion, taking inventory and addressing our physical and mental health is an important part of life after incarceration. 
My guest this week, Jenny Mannion, has some ideas on how to address these rough spots  - whether they be physical or mental. This is the focus of my chat with Jenny and I think you will find what she has to say insightful and worth exploring.
Jenny Mannion ( click for more info. on Jenny)
Remember, if God is for you, who can be against you?

Monday Jun 07, 2021

Hello!
Let's do some thinking about expectations.  Is it possible to expect too much from ourselves? Is there a difference between expectations and goals? How about our expectations of other people? How do we keep our expectations reasonable? 
My guest on this episode, Ben Winter, helps us figure out how to manage our expectations. He wrote a book about this, What To Expect When Having Expectations. Check out my interview with Ben Winter.
If God is for you who can be against you?
 

Sunday Feb 28, 2021

Welcome!
I hope you're doing well!
I've been thinking for quiet some time that doing an episode on sex addiction would probably be a good thing to do but frankly, actually going about doing it has seemed a little awkward. I've looked at guests to interview and there are some experts in recovery with professional credentials that I may still try to interview. But ultimately,  I decided to share some facts, look at the negative issues that arise from sex addiction, and share some resources for getting help. 
As we work to become productive citizens, we don't need something like this getting in our way!
Bottom line: Sex addictions are a very bad thing. Nothing good comes from porn in general and I'm convinced it's a one way street that goes nowhere.  If you need help,  it's available for free. I've included three resources below.
If God is for you, who can be against you?
SAA -  12 Step
S anon - for familiy members of addicts
sexhelp.com - povides a self evaluation and therapist search tool
 
 

Friday Feb 19, 2021

Hello!
I hope everyone is safe and warm. It has been a rough week here in the Houston area! Three has been record cold, ( 11 degrees a couple of nights ago),  major power outages,  water outages,  and empty grocery store shelves. All of this is on top of Covid. Wow! My heart goes out to people walking out of prison into this mess because while freedom feels great, there is a reality here that can make getting restarted even tougher. 
My guest this week, Lois Hollis will help us to address some the emotions we feel while getting ourselves going again. Namely, we will be talking about guilt and shame. 
Lately, I've been turning down interview requests because I just haven't seen anything we haven't covered before. I can not recall however devoting an entire show to a discussion on how guilt and shame can adversely affect our progress as we reintegrate. Lois talks about the importance of eliminating shame and guilt and how to go about doing that.
Lois Hollis
Remember, if God is for you, who can be aginst you?
 
 

Sunday Jan 31, 2021

Hello Everyone!
I came across a really good article on overcoming adversity I wanted to share. Overcoming adversity is a topic this podcast will always put front and center. Ultimately,  that's what getting out of prison and successfully getting what cased that to happen in our rear view window. How do we get from prison and the action that resulted in prison turned into an experience we can use to propel us forward into a clean life we can be proud of?  That's what overcoming our adversity is. Hopefully there is something in this week's podcast that helps you on your journey to achieving that.
Click HERE  for the article.
If God is for you, who can be against you?

Monday Jan 18, 2021

Hello and Happy New Year!
Hello everyone! I hope this year brings wonderful things to you! 
I wanted to spend some time talking about the National Institute of Corrections. The National Institute of Corrections is an arm of the Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Prisons. I'm sure they do great work...except for issues of reintegration. Inconsistent data and kicking the can down the road are immediately apparent when it comes to this government agency caring about what happens to people when they leave prison. Their general philosophy, appears to me, to pass the buck to an issue of public policy instead of addressing reintegration in any meaningful way for prisoners on their way out. They give lip service, in my view, to the issue to avoid political incorrectness and to keep from appearing to have no empathy. They aren't getting it right and it doesn't appear to me that they really much care to. I point out some things I've noticed about these guys on this episode.
I also wanted to spend a little time talking a little bit about dealing with stress. I hope there is something in that discussion that you can use!
As always remember, if God is for you, who can be against you?
 

Monday Nov 30, 2020

Hey there!
My guest on this episode is Dr. Aimee Harris Newon. Dr Aimee is a board certified integrative psychologist, author, speaker, and success coach. We tapped Aimee's knowledge on PTSD, and addiction and suggestions on how to identify and get help with those issues. 
Dr. Aimee can be heard on her weekly radio show in Chicago on WCPT 820 AM. 
Join me for my discussion with Dr. Aimee Harris and look for that tid-bit of information that will help you as you you work toward reintegration.
If God is for you, who can be against you?

Friday Nov 13, 2020

Hello everyone!
My guest this week has an interesting story about about overcoming devastating adversity. I've been doing this podcast for 10 years now and it always amazes me what some people go through in their lives! More than that, I continue to see over and over again how strong we human beings are. I like to feature these people and their stories from time to time because there is always at least a tidbit of knowledge we can identify in these struggles that can help us in our own journey.
Nipples To Kneecaps: To Die Or Not To Die With Cancer
My guest on this episode is Mandy Brown. Mandy tells her amazing story which includes her partner's diagnosis of cancer in which he was given three months to live. That was 10 years ago...... Check out what she's learned along the way and how her knowledge might be applied to the hurdles you face in your return home. 
Remember, if God is for you, who can be against you?
 

Friday Sep 11, 2020

Hi There!
My guest on this episode is Lisa Kohn. Lisa has great a great story about getting past the unresolved childhood issues that have, unknowingly in many cases, resulted in harmful behaviors as adults. Lisa's story involves judges, drugs, sex, rock and roll, and the Moonies. How could you possibly not want to hear this? 
It's all detailed in her book To The Moon And Back A Childhood Under The Influence 
You'll hear in our discussion the issues that arose during a rather wild childhood and how Lisa overcame those issues to go to Cornell, graduate school at Columbia University, and to experience success in her life. It is my hope that you can find something in Lisa's story that will be useful to you in your journey.
If God is for you, who can be against you?

Friday Aug 28, 2020

Hello!
I'm always looking for people to interview that have some ideas on overcoming adversity. I was lucky to come across this episode's guest through my friends at Radio Guest List. 
This week I interviewed  Michael Stawicki on a phone call from Poland Michael has 17 book titles to his name and and most of his books focus on techniques in overcoming adversity. Join for my chat with Michael.
If God is for you, who can be against you?

Tuesday Aug 11, 2020

Hello there!
You ever have a night in which no matter what you do, you can't fall asleep? I do.  Occasionally I'll find myself ruminating about whatever issue has popped up (as issues do) and it keeps me from getting any sleep. We've all been there. Reintegrating into society is alone enough to cause the kind of anxiety that results in restless nights let alone all the other pressures of life. 
My guest today, Sondra Kornblatt, has a rather unique way of approaching these nights and I hope by listening to her you can find a way to get some rest on those nights when you're tossing and turning. One of the books she's written, Restful Insomnia, addresses this issue and and Sondra shared some of her techniques with us in our interview.
Check out my chat with Sondra Kornblatt on this episode.
If God is for you, who can be against you?

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Facts

Rodney is a graduate of Houston Baptist University. The first decade of his career was focused on teaching Special Education where he chaired an elementary Special Education department. He spent the second half (about 8 years) of his career coaching football, coaching track,  and teaching History

Rodney and Rose have 5 children. Two of those those children are now teachers and both are, at the time of this writing, in graduate school. One of their children has a Master's degree in Engineering. One of their daughters is having a wonderful career at Amazon. One of their children is currently traveling and observing life.

Rodney and Rose are extremely proud of their children.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright © 2010 Rodney Mathers. All rights reserved.

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